I have just experienced Warholis Interuptus.
While watching the 2-part American Masters: Andy Warhol program on PBS, I hoped that at some point an interview with the artist would be shown. The interviewees were great, and the show is astounding, but numerous people talking about Warhol felt imbalanced. I wanted to hear something from the man himself. (Although an actor, imitating Warhol’s voice, read from his diaries in certain segments, it still wasn’t an actual interview.) Lo and behold, my wish was granted as the end credits began to roll. I heard about 6 seconds of the interview when suddenly, the screen split in two and PBS began a promo spiel that lasted until the last 3 seconds of the credits.
If I were the director or writer, I’d be raising holy ned about now. I know enough about film to understand that what goes on during the end credits is often the “big red bow” that ties the entire piece together. The writer put that stuff there for a reason; it’s not an afterthought. A film does not begin and end with what most people consider to be the most entertaining part, that is, the body. The top credits and the end credits are the appetizer and dessert. It’s there for a reason, especially when there is more content to be considered.
It’s pathetic that a network that boasts that it is based on supporting the arts will cut into one of their own programs in this way…and on a piece about the arts. And why? So that I could see and hear promo about the Andy Warhol program and how I can buy it. Excuse me, but what about your patrons? If we send in our pledges, why in hell should we have to buy the DVD to see the piece as the writer and director intended me to see it? I went to the PBS site and left a comment–polite, but to the point.